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Duchessina by Carolyn Meyer

Young Catherine de' Medici is the sole heiress to the entire fortune of the wealthy Medici family. But her life is far from luxurious. After a childhood spent locked away behind the walls of a convent, she joins the household of the pope, where at last she can be united with her true love. But, all too soon, that love is replaced with an engagement to a boy who is cold and aloof. It...

Ender in Exile by Orson Scott Card

Ender fought for humanity, but he is now reviled as a ruthless assassin. No longer allowed to live on Earth, he enters into exile. With his sister Valentine, he chooses to leave the only home he's ever known to begin a relativistic - and revelatory - journey beyond the stars.

Essays in Love by Alain de Botton

Charting the progress of an affair, from first kiss to argument and reconciliation, from intimacy and tenderness to anxiety, this is a wholly modern attempt to define the age-old dilemmas of the heart by detailing the highs and lows of contemporary romance.

Gehennical Fire by William R. Newman

Both the quest for natural knowledge and the aspiration to alchemical wisdom played crucial roles in the Scientific Revolution, as Newman demonstrates in this fascinating book about George Starkey (1628-1665), America's first famous scientist. Beginning with Starkey's unusual education in colonial New England, Newman traces out his many interconnected careers - natural philosopher...

Ghost World by Daniel Clowes

Originally serialized in the pages of the seminal comic book Eightball throughout the mid-1990s, this quasi-autobiographical story (the name of one of the protagonists is famously an anagram of the author's name) follows the adventures of two teenage girls, Enid and Becky, two best friends facing the prospect of growing up, and more importantly, apart. Clowes is one of the most...

Play It As It Lays by Joan Didion

A ruthless dissection of American life in the late 1960s, this novel captures the mood of an entire generation, the ennui of contemporary society reflected in spare prose that blisters and haunts the reader. Set in a place beyond good and evil-literally in Hollywood, Las Vegas, and the barren wastes of the Mojave Desert, but figuratively in the landscape of an arid soul - it is a...

The Auschwitz Violin by Maria Àngels Anglada

In the winter of 1991, at a concert in Krakow, an older woman with a marvelously pitched violin meets a fellow musician who is instantly captivated by her instrument. When he asks her how she obtained it, she reveals the remarkable story behind its origin... Imprisoned at Auschwitz, the notorious concentration camp, Daniel feels his humanity slipping away. Treasured memories of the...

The Demon Trapper's Daughter by Jana Oliver

Riley Blackthorne just needs a chance to prove herself - and that's exactly what the demons are counting on... Seventeen-year-old Riley, the only daughter of legendary Demon Trapper, Paul Blackthorne, has always dreamed of following in her father's footsteps. The good news is, with human society seriously disrupted by economic upheaval and Lucifer increasing the number of demons in...

The Devil's Star by Jo Nesbo

In the heat of a sweltering Oslo summer, a young woman is found murdered in her flat - with one of her fingers cut off and a tiny red star-shaped diamond placed under her eyelid. An off-the-rails alcoholic barely holding on to his job, Detective Harry Hole is assigned the case with Tom Waaler, a hated colleague whom Harry believes is responsible for the murder of his partner. When...

The Loves of Judith by Meir Shalev

When the mysterious Judith arrives in a small agricultural village in Palestine in the 1930s, she attracts attention of three men: Moshe, a widowed farmer; Globerman, a wealthy cattle dealer; and Jacob, who loses his wife - the most beautiful woman in the village - because of his obsession with Judith, who insists on living in a cowshed rather than settling down with any of her...

Tremor of Intent by Anthony Burgess

The amoral Agent Hillier of MI6 journeys to the city of Yarylyuk aboard the passenger ship Polyolbion, on a mission to infiltrate a convention of Soviet scientists and return to Britain his childhood friend Roper, who has defected to Russia. En route, he meets the sexually precocious sixteen-year-old Clara, the voluptuous femme fatale Miss Devi, and the shadowy tycoon Theodorescu.

You Are Here by Jennifer E. Smith

Emma and her neighbor Peter are both lonely in a way that only bothers them on occasion. They both come from families they don't quite understand. They both feel like something big is missing from their lives - and they're both about to search for answers. When Emma makes a discovery that shakes the foundations of her identity, she convinces Peter to join her for a road trip. Each of...